From the disparities that online monitoring software can exacerbate among remote learners, to the harms teens are exposed to via dark patterns and algorithms, an increasingly complex batch of privacy problems revolve around the use of childrenâ€™s data.
Many of these problems surfaced in public last month when The Wall Street Journal published an investigative series entitled â€œThe Facebook Filesâ€� that sought to document the â€œill effectsâ€� of these platforms. According to one internal study leaked in the reports, about one in three (32%) teen girls who felt bad about their bodies said that using Instagram made them feel even worse. Sizeable minorities of teens, especially girls, also said social media compounded their struggles with problems such as anorexia, self-harm and suicidal thoughts.
This reporting was made possible by a former Facebook data scientist-turned-whistleblower named Frances Haugen, who provided company documents that served as the basis for the series. Haugen was subsequently summoned to Capitol Hill and testified before the Senate Commerce, Science and